Our core development & design team are all taking official HANA classes (via the SAP HANA startup focus) and the design for our exciting SAP/HANA solution will soon be completed. Hopefully it will take the professional services and technology industries by storm. We're confident that the companies that choose to implement it will have a distinct advantage over those that don't....
May 2, 2013
We're into the SAP HANA Startup process, and stoked! Our HANA-based solution should be a realty this year (2013). Details later...
Mar 4, 2013
Well, it took a little longer to get going than we had hoped, but we have published our first "Bullet Point," on LinkedIn today. Check it out and let us know what you think:
Feb 20, 2013
The end of 2012 approaches and it was an interesting and wonderful year in many ways. In other ways, it was just like any other year, but that can be a good thing. We at WG are happy to announce the addition of another major technology company to add to our roster of clients. We'll be posting some info about what is going on there in the near future.
We're also excited to start, in January 2013, the posting of Wyndham Group "Bullet Points," which are rapid but insightful learning sessions on topics that we find useful in our profession and with our clients. Examples of upcoming topics include:
- Consolidated invoice portals in SAP for Professional Services Firms
- Statutory reporting using SAP's NewGL (parallel ledgers)
- Using HANA inside and outside of analytics (i.e. within ECC)
- Tackling WIP with multi-element invoicing (software, services, hardware, etc...all on one invoice!)
- And much much more!! : )
The idea is to help educate each other within our organization with simple weekly info sharing. It is much easier for an independent-minded consultant to have 20 other highly qualified minds filtering and distilling the mass of information available to us all into what is actually useful than to be trying to keep up with SAP's dynamic landscape all alone.
We thought we'd then share our insights with you so that you can see what we're about and what we can bring to your engagements. Also, it might be a good way to encourage like-minded consultants to seek us out. We'll be posting our sessions on LinkedIn starting in January.
Happy holidays, everyone.
Until next year,
Dec 12, 2012
For those of you who are using SAP's RRB-based Professional Services solution, I thought you might find some benefit from a recap of the issues that are inherent in it from a WIP perspective. Here is part of the text from an "open letter to SAP" about my thoughts on future development. This includes thoughts on the Commercial Project Management (CPM) solution - one about which I have posted extensively - but also about future releases of SAP-ERP. Regardless of how the issues I mention get addressed (either in CPM or standard-delivered SAP), they will need to be addressed in order to offer pro-serv firms the functionality they require. Read on.....
As you are aware, one of the biggest challenges is a timely WIP calculation using accurate pricing. To accomplish this currently, either Results Analysis must be executed (often modified) or else some form of RRB (I have seen many clients choose to calculate and store the results via a custom program that leverages standard RRB functions).
I believe that WIP values should be tackled via two separate processes:
--- real time
Real time at CO doc creation (new docs)
You have already realized (from your comments yesterday) that WIP calculation on the related line items (typically CO docs coming from time entry) would be best executed at the time of the item’s creation. For example, when time is released from CATS to CO and the CO doc created, a WIP calculation should occur. Of course, accurate WIP values at this time depend upon the WBS being assigned to a contract and the required pricing being set up as well. Often times, pricing for a time entry is not complete or accurate at the time of the time entry’s creation. Still, having a preliminary WIP value in real time would be ideal.
Periodic WIP calculation (existing docs)
But, of course, it would also be necessary to do a periodic WIP calculation to capture changes in the pricing (contract changes, condition value changes, etc) that have happened since the original posting of the CO doc or since the last periodic WIP calculation. There is where seeing your ‘slimmed down’ pricing procedure yesterday seems very valuable. If there could be a standard delivered way to replicate pricing without all the tax calculations and store the results at the CO doc line item level (in something like COEP extensions), then clients would not need to create a custom RRB to make the program more efficient. If pricing in general as well as Results analysis could leverage HANA, then perhaps it is a moot point and standard pricing/Results analysis/RRB could be made much more efficient, meaning that standard programs could be used. However, storing the results at a sufficient level of non-summarized detail, such as at the CO line item level, would still be necessary. That is why I believe it would be very helpful if your ‘slimmed down’ pricing program could be used to calculate and store WIP actuals. It could also be put on the list for functionality to be HANA-based.
Nov 12, 2012
Here at WG around the nation, we're all quite busy with critical client stuff:
- A major client in Houston is having the Financial Controllers of its foreign divisions visit for final stages of their parallel ledgers (SAP NewGL) prep for int'l statutory reporting and we're putting the finishing touches on the functionality, documents, etc....all the goods (i.e. deliverables).
- A major pro-serv client is getting serious about it's consolidated billing portal, and...
- A major software company out west is rolling out its license biz in SAP
......so we're all slammed, to put it mildly.
Therefore, for the sake of our teams and for brevity I'm just gonna borrow my LinkedIn/Twitter updates for this month's blog. Call it lazy, but there is wisdom and efficiency in the recycling of one's work-product:
"SAP's Commercial Project Management bolt-on is really shaping up nice. It ought to help large orgs a lot in handling billable projects."
"For the record, Halloween has taken the top spot on my list of favorite holidays: costumes, candy, friends, fun, and no visiting relatives."
Nov 1, 2012
Had another one of those co-innovation meetings with SAP today (regarding the Commercial Project Management package for Pro-Serv) and the age old topic of actual WIP calculation came up. All parties within SAP that I speak to agree that HANA is the way to go on the pricing engine, and the functionality has been submitted for consideration to the HANA group (internally within SAP, different groups responsible for different functionality are submitting internal requests to have their code HANA-enabled). Of course, this does not guarantee that HANA will be implemented in pricing/RRB/Results analysis, but it is the right start.
Also exciting is the development of a slimmed-down pricing procedure that can be used for Commercial Projects' Financial Planning. It strips out the tax calculations that slow down pricing and obviously runs the calculations much faster. If this idea could be ported over to WIP actuals, then it would save a lot of pro-serv clients the trouble of customizing Results Analysis/RRB.
On a personal note: Happy first-date anniversary to my beautiful, patient, and intriguing wife! You are just as exciting 13 years later....
Sept 5, 2012
HANA is a game-changer for analytics, no doubt, but I really, REALLY hope that the pricing engine is toward the top of the queue of ECC operational functionality that will be converted (aka HANA-fied)! Imagine how much faster pricing would be with all those condition values stored in-memory.....
Aug 16, 2012
I just had a very informative discussion with a major seller and implementer of BbyD and I have to revise my earlier posting (and opinion) that Business One will supplant BbyD in the marketplace or in SAP's cloud roadmap any time soon. Although ultimately the market will decide SAP's cloud direction (BbyD versus hosted ECC), I think BbyD might be the better fit for small and mid-sized companies once all things are considered (primarily TCO & scalability). Although I may just be jazzed on BbyD based solely on my recent conversation (the presenters were quite convincing), I must admit we at WG are considering mightily whether to allocate some of our new resources toward BbyD sales and implementation.
We'll study up as best we can on the functionality and keep you posted as we make our decision.
Aug 5, 2012
Regarding the SAP-BbyD/SF merger and the hope it will give SAP's cloud strategy some clarity, here is an interesting article:
http://www.informationweek.com/news/ software/enterprise_apps/240004542 #disqus_thread
Back in the on-premise world, we are happy to be participating in the design sessions for a new professional services package that SAP is developing (called Project Workspace). From what we've seen so far, they're doing the right things in building the necessary 'bones' to link disparate objects together that have typically represented a project/opportunity ( client/contract/WBS, etc). And yet the new functionality is flexible enough to let customers more easily build their own processing transactions (billing editors, WIP analytics) if the standard is not desireable. This is an opportunity for us to put some good design ideas into RRB and WIP, which have been stumbling blocks for many SAP Professional Services customers thusfar (sorry, SAP, but you know it is true).
I'll divulge more as I learn it....
Aug 1, 2012
Word is that the virtually all of Success Factors (SF) sales team is working opportunities in the on-premise/ERP space. Biz-By-Design is still waiting for that acquisition to push some biz their way, but my bet is that the marketplace will ultimately choose Business One (slimmed down on-premise ERP offered as a hosted, subscription-based solution) and BbyD will be phased out. Either way, SF appears hot right now, and SAP's management is looking wise.
As for me, I am excited to see SF in action at a future client demo.
July 17, 2012
I recently got interviewed by a small business publication (I'll link it if they actually run the article) who asked for the best business advice I've ever been given. First of all, I'm not really a fan of the clever quip or knowing phrase, and I was tempted to rattle off something in Latin (I don't speak it, though I know a few phrases). After thinking for a bit, though, I settled on this:
"People will do business with you if they like you, though being really good at what you do also helps."
July 11, 2012
(Happy birthday, Dad)
Sincerely hoping that Lars Dalgaard can help (fast!) with the frustating process of learning about SAP's cloud offerings (i.e. BBD) and roadmap...
On the other hand, I am even more excited about HANA than the exurberant marketing materials are:
June 20, 2012